Don’t know about you but it’s at this stage in half marathon training where I start to feel tired. I talked last week about the importance of eating well and staying hydrated. This week I’d like to talk about the importance of rest.
With the increased mileage you are pushing your body harder and may be asking it to go further than it has before. Your body can and will adapt to that extra stimulus but it needs rest in order to do so. It sounds simple but try to make sure you are getting enough sleep!
Think about what you do in the days either side of the long run. Maybe you should rest the day before leaving you fresh and giving your body chance to repair any micro damage. The day after the long run a swim, a gentle walk or a stretch class can be just the thing.
At this level we want to run 3 or 4 times per week, cross train a couple of times which leaves 1 or 2 days per week for rest. This can also really help to recharge the batteries mentally. Remember we are running for fitness and pleasure – it’s not supposed to feel like an endless slog!
There is no fitness to be gained in the last couple of weeks before your race which is why we reduce the mileage and start to focus on rest and recovery. Your aim in these last weeks is to arrive at the start feeling fresh and injury free.
Remember rest is a crucial part of your training so remember to plan in time for rest as you would everything else!